Thur, Jan. 12, 2017: Obama surprises Joe Biden with Presidential Medal of Freedom

Calling him “the best vice president America has ever had,” President Barack Obama awarded Joe Biden the Presidential Medal of Freedom Thursday in a surprise tribute to his friend and close adviser for the last eight years.

The medal is the highest civilian honor in the United States, and Biden appeared stunned and wiped away tears.

When he took the podium, he started by jokingly telling his chief of staff “you’re fired,” for not hinting at the surprise.

“This honor is not only well beyond what I deserve, but it’s a reflection of the extent and generosity of your spirit,” Biden said.

“I don’t deserve this. But I know it came from the president’s heart,” he said. “There is a Talmudic saying that says what comes from the heart enters the heart. Mr. President, you have crept into our heart, you and your whole family.”

Tue, Jan. 10, 2017: Obama gives farewell address in Chicago

In the morning, the President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

In the afternoon, the President will travel to Chicago, Illinois. The departure from the South Lawn is open press, and the arrival at Chicago O’Hare International Airport is open to pre-credentialed media.

In the evening, the President will deliver his farewell address to the American people, where he will thank his supporters, celebrate the ways we have changed this country for the better these past eight years, and offer his vision on where we all go from here. The Vice President, the First Lady, and Dr. Biden will also attend. The President’s address at McCormick Place is open to pre-credentialed media; however, the RSVP deadline has passed.

Later in the evening, the President will depart Chicago, Illinois en route Washington, DC. The departure from Chicago O’Hare International Airport is open to pre-credentialed media, and the arrival on the South Lawn is open press.

Fri, Jan. 6, 2017: Obama participates in interview about ACA

In the morning, the President and the Vice President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

Later in the morning, the President will participate in an interview with Vox’s Ezra Klein and Sarah Kliff to discuss the Affordable Care Act.  This interview at the Blair House will be covered by the in-town travel pool and livestreamed at www.whitehouse.gov/live.

Tue, Jan. 3, 2017: No Public Events

In the morning, the President and Vice President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

In the afternoon, the President will attend meetings at the White House.

Mon, Jan. 2, 2017: Obama returns to Washington

U.S. President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama greet people before boarding Air Force One as they leave Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, adjacent to Honolulu, Hawaii, en route to Washington, Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017, after their annual family vacation on the island of Oahu. (AP)
U.S. President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama greet people before boarding Air Force One as they leave Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, adjacent to Honolulu, Hawaii, en route to Washington, Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017, after their annual family vacation on the island of Oahu. (AP)

His last presidential vacation behind him, Barack Obama is entering the closing stretch of his presidency, an eleventh-hour push to tie up loose ends and put finishing touches on his legacy before handing the reins to President-elect Donald Trump.

Obama returns to Washington midday Monday from Hawaii with just two-and-a-half weeks left. His final days will largely be consumed by a bid to protect his endangered health care law, a major farewell speech and the ongoing handover of power to Trump.

In an email to supporters on Monday, Obama said he’ll deliver a valedictory speech on Jan. 10, following a tradition set in 1796 when the first president, George Washington, spoke to the American people for the last time in office. The speech will take place at McCormick Place, a giant convention center in Obama’s hometown of Chicago. [Read more…]

Tue, Dec. 27, 2016: Obama meets with Japanese PM, participates in Pearl harbor observance

obama-pearl-harbor

In the morning, the President will hold a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan at Camp H.M. Smith. There will be a pool spray at the top of this meeting.

Later in the morning, the President will participate in a wreath-laying ceremony aboard the USS Arizona Memorial. There will be travel pool coverage of this ceremony.

In the afternoon, the President will deliver remarks with Prime Minister Abe at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. These remarks will be open to pre-credentialed media.

 

Tue, Dec. 20, 2016: Obama works out, goes to beach on 4th day of vacation

12:45 p.m.

President Barack Obama and the rest of the first family are spending the afternoon with friends at the beach at Bellows Air Force Station on Oahu’s east side.

The motorcade arrived at the beach just after noon after a 30-minute drive from Obama’s beachfront rental in the nearby town of Kailua.

Waimanalo Bay, where Bellows is located, is known for its more than five miles of white sandy beach and stunning views of Makapuu Point and the Koolau mountain range.

Just a handful of beach-goers could be seen as the motorcade pulled into the 1,049-acre Air Force Station.

Obama began the day with a 90-minute workout at Marine Corps Base Hawaii before returning to his Kailua beachfront rental home.

———

8:55 a.m.

President Barack Obama is hitting the gym to start the fourth day of his Hawaii vacation.

Obama is working out Tuesday morning at Marine Corps Base Hawaii near the first family’s beachfront rental home in Kailua.

The motorcade passed a handful of onlookers on the way to the base, but most motorists seemed to pay no mind to the now-familiar sight while making their morning commute.

The sky over the base is partly cloudy with light winds and high humidity.

Obama’s workout comes after and the first lady dined at Vintage Cave, a high-end restaurant in Honolulu, on Monday night.

Sun, Dec. 18, 2016: Obama golfs with friends on first day of vacation

The latest on President Barack Obama’s annual two-week vacation in Hawaii (all times local):

3:10 p.m.

President Barack Obama enjoyed the first day of his annual holiday vacation in Hawaii playing over four hours of golf under mostly sunny skies at the marine base on the island of Oahu, where he was born.

The president played golf with a longtime friend and three aides.

Before leaving the base, the president passed by a giant Christmas tree decorated with colorful ornaments, a tradition on base.

As Obama’s motorcade returned to the first family’s rental home in the afternoon, it passed by a sign saying “Aloha Obama Ohana.

___

11:35 a.m.

On the first day of his Hawaii vacation, President Barack Obama is playing golf with three aides and a longtime friend.

The presidential fivesome is enjoying temperatures in the 70s at Klipper Golf Club inside Marine Corps Base Hawaii on the island of Oahu, where Obama was born.

Obama is with his longtime friend and classmate Bobby Titcomb; Joe Paulsen, his principal travel aide; Michael Brush, deputy assistant to the president; and Luke Rosa, senior associate director and trip manager.

___

10:45 a.m.

Obama’s motorcade left his Kailua vacation rental home midday under partly cloudy skies with temperatures in the 70s, after arriving from chilly Washington D.C. Friday night.

The motorcade passed by a few signs saying “Close Gitmo,” ”Open Cuba,” ”Drones Kill Kids” and “Aloha please talk with us” and people standing in their yards taking pictures.

As the motorcade entered the base, the sun was shining over Kaneohe Bay with the verdant Koolau mountain range shrouded with clouds in the backdrop.

–AP

Wed, Dec. 14, 2016: Obama hosts Hanukkah receptions, speaks at My Brother’s Keeper summit

In the afternoon, the President will host a Hanukkah reception in the East Room. The First Lady will also attend. There will be pooled press coverage of the President’s remarks.

Later in the afternoon, the President will deliver remarks at a My Brother’s Keeper summit. The President’s remarks in South Court Auditorium will be open to pre-credentialed media.

In the evening, the President will host a second Hanukkah reception in the East Room. The First Lady will also attend. There will be pooled press coverage of the President’s remarks.

Tue, Dec. 13, 2016: Obama meets with National Security Council, signs 21st Century Cures Act

In the morning, the President will convene his National Security Council for a periodic review of the progress of the Counter-ISIL campaign and to discuss efforts to diminish violence and increase humanitarian access for the Syrian people.  This meeting in the Situation Room is closed press.

In the afternoon, the President will deliver remarks and sign the 21st Century Cures Act. The Vice President will also deliver remarks. This bill will make new investments to address the heroin and prescription opioid epidemic, accelerate discoveries in cancer research as part of the Cancer Moonshot, expand the Administration’s BRAIN and Precision Medicine Initiatives, and take important steps to improve mental health and the Food and Drug Administration’s drug development process. The President’s and Vice President’s remarks in South Court Auditorium are open to pre-credentialed media.

Later in the afternoon, the Vice President will hold a roundtable on the Cancer Moonshot to discuss military and first responder care. There will be a pool spray at the top of this roundtable in the Vice President’s Ceremonial Office.

Mon, Dec. 12, 2016: No public events

In the morning, the President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

In the afternoon, the President will attend meetings at the White House.

Tue, Dec. 6, 2016: Obama visits U.S. Central Command, delivers remarks on counterterrorism strategy

President Barack Obama talks with Tom Donilon, Chair of the President's Commission on Enhancing National Cybersecurity, in the Lower Cross Hall of the White House, Dec. 2, 2016. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
President Barack Obama talks with Tom Donilon, Chair of the President’s Commission on Enhancing National Cybersecurity, in the Lower Cross Hall of the White House, Dec. 2, 2016. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

In the morning, the President will travel to Tampa, Florida. The departure from the South Lawn is open press, and the arrival at Tampa International Airport is open to pre-credentialed media.

In the afternoon, the President will meet with active duty service members at MacDill Air Force Base, the home of the U.S. Special Operations Command and U.S. Central Command.

Later in the afternoon, the President will deliver remarks to thank service members.

Afterward, the President will deliver remarks on the Administration’s approach to counterterrorism.

In the evening, the President will depart Tampa, Florida en route Washington, DC. The departure from Tampa International Airport is open to pre-credentialed media, and the arrival on the South Lawn is open press.

Fri, Dec. 2, 2016: Obama meets with new UN secretary-general

In the morning, the President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

Later in the morning, the President will meet with United Nations Secretary-General-designate Antonio Guterres. There will be a pool spray at the top of this meeting in the Oval Office.

Thur, Dec. 1, 2016: Obama participates National Christmas Tree Lighting

In the morning, the President and the Vice President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

In the afternoon, the President and the First Family will attend the National Christmas Tree Lighting on the Ellipse. The President will deliver remarks. This event is open to pre-credentialed media.

Wed, Nov. 30, 2016: Obama meets with Nobel Prize winners

In the morning, the President and the Vice President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

In the afternoon, the President will meet with the 2016 American Nobel Prize winners in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

Tue, Nov. 29, 2016: Obama visits wounded soldiers at Walter Reed

Volunteers and staff work on holiday decorations in the Lower Cross Hall of the White House, Nov. 28, 2016. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)
Volunteers and staff work on holiday decorations in the Lower Cross Hall of the White House, Nov. 28, 2016. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

In the morning, the President and Vice President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

In the afternoon, the President will travel to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland to visit with wounded service members. This visit is closed press.

Mon, Nov. 28, 2016: Obama attends meetings at WH

In the morning, the President and the Vice President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press.

In the afternoon, the President will attend meetings at the White House.

Wed, Nov. 23, 2016: Obama pardons Thanksgiving Turkey, participates in service event

In afternoon, the President will pardon the National Thanksgiving Turkey in a ceremony in the Rose Garden. The President will celebrate the 69th anniversary of the National Thanksgiving Turkey presentation, reflect upon the time-honored traditions of Thanksgiving, and wish American families a safe and healthy holiday. The 2016 National Thanksgiving Turkey and its alternate were hatched and raised in Iowa. This ceremony is open press.

The Vice President and Dr. Biden will be in Nantucket, Massachusetts. There are no public events scheduled.

Later in the afternoon, the First Family will participate in a service event in the Washington, DC area. There will be travel pool coverage.